‘Anything on the table’ at city gathering | TheUnion.com

‘Anything on the table’ at city gathering

Grass Valley citizens asked questions and voiced opinions about downtown parking, affordable housing, rent controls and the state of the city at a special town-hall, public-input meeting at the Grass Valley Veterans Memorial Hall Wednesday night.

Mayor Mark Johnson said the city will hold similar meetings now twice a year to listen to citizens problems, concerns and to let them know what is going on at city hall. The meetings were designed by new City Administrator Dan Holler, who said, “Anything is on the table.”

Citizens learned that Holler wants to continue the dialogue of city business with residents through e-mails and those interested can sign up

at city hall.

Pat Wilder said she almost sold her house recently and a messy neighbor made it tough. “Is their a regulation for the neighbors keeping up their yards?” she asked.

The homeowner was assured by Community Development Director Joe Heckel that there was ” for garbage, high weeds and debris ” and all Wilder had to do was call the city to take care of it.

Olympia Glade Mobile Home Park resident Don Ryan learned from Holler that the city is working on some rent controls for senior mobile home parks. Ryan is concerned that higher rents in his Brunswick Basin park will also drive the value of his home down.

Dave Clark urged the city to look hard at its energy usage and how it impacts the budget.

Parking was Pat Wynne’s concern and she learned from Vice Mayor Lisa Swarthout that her downtown store patrons are evenly split on whether there should be parking meters there. Swarhout said the possibility for a parking structure also exists.

With 1,200 parking spots downtown and 900 of them private, Heckel said the city is exploring ways to get the owners to lease or share them.

Affordable housing remains a concern, according to council members Chauncey Poston and Jan Arbuckle. They will have a report on the issue for the council to digest next month.

Councilman Dan Miller said the housing issue and job creation is paramount for the city’s future and the only real way to keep the town’s vibrancy.

To contact Senior Staff Writer Dave Moller, e-mail dmoller@theunion.com or call 477-4237.

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